Are you getting a black screen or blank display when you boot up or use your computer? There are times when your monitor easily connects to your computer, but you end up with a black screen with a message such as No input or No cable connected.
There are many reasons a computer display might go blank or black, and I will try to pick all of the options below. Most often, this problem is associated with some kind of hardware, be it a video card, cables, monitor, RAM or motherboard.
Sometimes it can also be a software problem. I’ll mention the simpler fixes first, because in the worst case, you will have to replace the hardware on your computer.
The first method – energy check
You’ve probably already done this, but it’s always worth mentioning because it happens more often than you think. Make sure the monitor is on, which is usually indicated by some kind of light on the power button itself. If the light is on, the monitor is on and you should see some kind of message.
If your monitor is on but nothing is displayed, try pressing the menu button to bring up the built-in monitor controls. If you still have a blank screen, it could mean that there is a problem with your monitor. Even if nothing is connected, you can bring up the monitor menu. Try connecting another monitor if you have one.
If an individual monitor is working properly, it could mean that the power supply to the original monitor is bad. Try replacing the power supply and see if that solves the problem.
Now check if the computer is turned on properly. The main thing here is to check for any warning signals or unusual beeps when turning on the computer. If the power button or one of the status lights is red or orange, or if the computer beeps several times when turned on, this indicates an internal problem.
You can read my previous post on how to check your computer for bad memory, which can be one of the causes of the beeps. Beeps can also be related to the motherboard, graphics card, etc. You will need to consult your PC manufacturer’s manual to find out what the beeps or status lights mean.
If the power is on and everything is in order, but the display is still blank, the computer may have entered Standby or Hibernation and will not wake up. Try pressing keys on your keyboard or moving your mouse. If none of this works, try restarting your computer by pressing the power button.
The second way – checking cables
The next thing to do is check all cables. Whether you are using VGA, DVI, HDMI, or DisplayPort to connect your computer to your monitor, cables can sometimes come loose. This is especially true for cables that do not screw into the back of the monitor.
Make sure you check the connection on the PC and on the monitor. Those of you with more than one graphics card need to be careful when connecting monitors.
If you have a dedicated graphics card, make sure the monitor is connected to the graphics card and not to the motherboard video connector. By default, Windows should automatically disable the motherboard graphics if you have a separate graphics card, but sometimes it doesn’t.
If you end up plugging your monitor into your motherboard, it might work a little, but it will suddenly go blank. Restarting may fix the problem, but it will happen again. If you have two monitors and you connect one to the motherboard and the other to the video card, then one monitor will be blank and you now know the reason.
If the cables are plugged in and you only have one video connection, then you need to rule out the bad cables. To do this, you need to find another monitor to which your computer will be connected. If the screen is also blank on the second monitor, there may be a problem with the video cable.
Try replacing the video cable or using a different video cable if you have multiple connection options such as DVI, HDMI, etc. If using VGA works, it could mean there is a problem with the HDMI or DVI cable.
Third method – check accuracy, width and source
Sometimes, if you accidentally set Windows to a resolution higher than what your monitor supports, it will just go out. To fix this, you first need to start Windows in Safe Mode.
After you put your computer into Safe Mode, follow my instructions for fixing a blank screen due to screen resolution.
In most modern versions of Windows, the system actually reverts to its original screen resolution within 15 seconds unless you click the Save Changes button. In addition, Windows usually detects the maximum resolution your monitor supports and only shows these options.
Thus, you will only come across this program if you are using an older version of Windows or a really old monitor. Another situation where you might get a blank screen is when you connected your laptop to an optional display or projector and then just unplugged it without telling Windows.
This can usually be fixed on laptops by pressing one of the function keys and then pressing the monitor key on the keyboard.
Finally, you should also make sure that the input source on your monitor is set to the correct input. Most monitors usually automatically detect the input source, but sometimes this feature can be disabled. Press the buttons on the monitor to open the options, go to the Input section and switch to the correct input.
Fourth method – BIOS and recovery options
If you see the startup startup screen when you turn on your computer, but it goes blank after Windows boots up, then you know it’s a Windows problem.
If Windows is damaged, your only option is to boot into Safe Mode and then try to repair Windows either with System Restore / Automatic Repair or with Reset or Refresh My Computer.
I would try a system restore or automatic repair first, and if none of them work, try restarting your computer. Restarting your computer will keep all your programs and data, but reinstall Windows system files.
Fifth method – hardware check
The last step is to take a look at the actual hardware. Before doing anything else, try disconnecting all devices and peripherals from your computer, such as keyboard, mouse, external hard drive, speakers, printers, scanners, etc.
Sometimes a problem with other equipment can cause the display to go blank. If that doesn’t work, check the ports on the computer and monitor for damage.
There are times when someone pulls the cable out the wrong way and this causes the video port on the computer to bend. Sometimes people try to insert the cable into the wrong connection, which can damage the gold or silver connectors you see inside the port.
You really don’t have many options but to take your computer to a repair shop to fix bent or damaged ports. In most cases, they tell you to just replace your graphics card.
If you are a little tech-savvy, you can try opening your computer and checking if everything is connected and installed correctly. You should have already checked the RAM using the article I mentioned above, but you should also make sure that the fan on the graphics card is working.
The only other issue at this stage is your motherboard or hard drive. You will likely need to get your computer repaired, as trying to fix these components yourself can result in more damage. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to comment. Enjoy!